Inside Track on Music Row: October 2021

Monthly Music News Column by Preshias Harris


The Grand Ole Orpy celebrates its 96th birthday on November 28th.

The phrase “Grand Ole Opry” was first uttered on radio on December 10, 1927. At the time, the NBC Red Network’s Music Appreciation Hour, a program with classical music and selections from grand opera, was followed by Hays’ Barn Dance.

The show has been part of country music history and its biggest moments; it has been the catalyst. Johnny Cash met June Carter at the Opry, Bill Monroe and his band invented bluegrass on the Opry stage, and our many unexpected guests —  from Paul McCartney to Bill Murray to Pharrell Williams  —  have made our one-night-only shows truly unforgettable.


Now that Jared James Nichols has released his new Shadow Dancer EP on Black Hill Records the Nashville-singer-songwriter-guitarist will join Black Stone Cherry for a U.S. tour launching on October 5 at Ardmore Music Hall in Ardmore, PA.

All live, tracked to tape, high-volume and no safety net, Shadow Dancer is Nichols’ most heated and varied offering yet.

Jared has also teamed with Artist Works to offer a limited run of brand-new VIP online guitar-playing lessons in rock and blues guitar. Jared’s guided path of lessons includes custom riffs and exercises paired with downloadable play-along tracks recorded exclusively for this course.

From string basics and guitar tuning, to slides, bends, and speed & accuracy exercises, these guitar lessons give everything needed to solo, improvise, and jam with serious Blues Power. For more information, visit:  

More info at  


Garth Brooks’ next Dive Bar Tour stop at Diamond Ballroom in Oklahoma City received over 10,000 entries in the first 40 minutes, crashing the 93.3 Jake-FM (Newcastle/Oklahoma City, OK) app to request tickets and continued with every opportunity to enter for tickets, adding up to over 130,000 enquiries so far since the launch.

Garth Brooks said, “Let me get this straight…93.3 Jake-FM is only a couple of days in on the dive bar promotion and have had 130,000 entries for a venue that is issuing 700 tickets???? That’s not just crazy, that’s INSANE!!!”  J

ake-FM Program Director Kevin Christopher said, “This is the biggest promotion in 93.3 Jake FM’s history.” The only way into this concert is to win through country radio. The concert will take place Monday, October 11th. All entrants must show proof of vaccination or a negative covid test. More about Garth at


Independent artist Matt Bailie has released his latest single and music video, “Whiskey Away,” available to stream and purchase at all major digital retailers at   

The visually engaging music video, directed by Johnny Dwinell and filmed on location at Alley Taps in historic Printer’s Alley in Nashville, was premiered on The Country Network and digitally premiered by Nashville Noise. Watch the video on YouTube.

“Whiskey Away,” written by Barrett Baber, Michael Wilkes, and Colin Healy, presents a twist on the usual “guy meets girl in a bar” theme and shows a more vulnerable side of the man in the story. The track, produced by Michael Wilkes, opens with a driving groove before it eases back just enough for Bailie to set the stage of being at a bar and opening a tab just in time to see a blonde beauty entering with a group of her friends. 

 “Whiskey Away” is the debut song from Bailie’s forthcoming EP, ‘Naked,’ slated for release later this year. It marks the return to the country music scene for the Florida born talent. More at Bailie at  


Singer, songwriter and guitar slinger Tommy Townsend has signed with BFD/Audium Nashville, it was announced by company GM Chuck Rhodes. Townsend’s first album from the label will be Southern Man, 10 songs produced by Waylon Jennings and Jerry “Jigger” Bridges over 20 years ago but never officially released. Several songs will be released to streaming services in the coming months, with the full album being available early in 2022.  

“Tommy Townsend is Country Soul personified!” said Rhodes. “From standing next to Waylon Jennings on stage, to carrying on the Waylon tradition with Waymore’s Outlaws, he does his mentor proud with the previously unreleased gem called Southern Man.”  

Southern Man was recorded over several years with both Jennings and his tour manager and bass player Jerry “Jigger” Bridges producing the tracks. Jennings contributes his distinctive vocals on several of the songs.  

In introducing the music years ago, Waylon is quoted as saying: “This is my good friend Tommy Townsend…He is one of the most soulful singers I know.” More about Tommy Townsend and the new album at  


UK Born, Roger Cook (Award winning songwriter on a global basis) lends his songwriting chops to David Ferguson—David is one of Nashville’s great musical treasures and a living legend for his work as a Grammy award winning recording engineer, studio owner, video game soundtrack composer, and collaborator with the likes of Johnny Cash, John Prine, and Sturgill Simpson—has taken a long overdue step into the spotlight with his new album Nashville No More.

Available everywhere now via Fat Possum Records, Nashville No More presents Ferguson aka Fergie at the very top of his game. “Chardonnay,” the album’s final single, is available now and features the man himself joined by outlaw country’s great asset, Margo Price, lending her voice to a country-meets-bossa nova feel.

“Chardonnay was there to comfort me during the recording of this record,” says Fergie.  “I’m forever thankful to Roger Cook for having the good sense to write a beautiful love song to a glass of wine.

“Chardonnay” buy/stream at    

Sturgill Simpson says: “The Ferg is a bonafide card-carrying legendary hillbilly genius and when he talks you better shut up and listen.”

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